Allegrini 2018

Wine Intelligence: focus on regular and local consumers, focus on iconic wines and marketing

From the conference Agivi, the weight of young people, women and enthusiasts in the Covid-19 era
Domestic consumption and young people support wine

Passionate, young and female, ready to drink even between meals: this is the identikit of the consumer protagonist of the recovery in wine consumption according to Wine Intelligence data, presented today at Wine2Wine Digital, the forum on the online wine business signed by VeronaFiere and Vinitaly, at the conference “Let’s give numbers: young people, wine and market from lockdown to today”, organized by Agivi - Associazione Giovani Imprenditori Vinicoli Italiani (Unione Italiana Vini), to analyze the effect of Covid-19 on the consumption patterns of the new generations. A conference from which emerge, in the words of Pierpaolo Penco, Italy Country Manager of Wine Intelligence, five good practices that the wine companies of Italy must take into account to move in the markets in the coming months.
“First of all, we need to focus marketing activities on our consumers, those who already know, appreciate and drink wine, especially those of intermediate generations (25-50 years), while the youth audience should be cultivated with specific offers. Secondly - continues Penco - we must not forget the local: there is an increase in consumption of local products everywhere, also for ethical reasons, as we see well in Italy. Let’s not forget that our local consumers can be the main target of our product, which can pass both on the online channels and for direct sales. As a third advice that emerges from our analysis, not to launch into new products: let’s try to focus on what characterizes us and what we are recognized value for. If we are a Brunello di Montalcino winery, let’s focus on that. As a fourth thing, we need to spend on marketing: many people in times of crisis reduce their investments, and this could give more weight to our voice and our message. Finally, on the fifth point, we must learn to focus on types and formats that best meet the new needs of home consumption, away from food and for small groups. Let’s try to understand which are our products that best respond to these new opportunities”.
Opportunities that arise in a picture that the pandemic has changed, but not distorted. “We examined the six key markets for Italian wine, the United States, Germany, Sweden, Canada, Australia and China - explained Pierpaolo Penco - and observed how the frequency of wine consumption has remained stable and, in many countries, has grown beyond the levels of 2019”. According to the photograph taken in August, in fact, “the lockdowns in the various countries have not stopped the ten-year trend of diversification and increased opportunities for consumption: the multiplication of the moments to drink at home has compensated for the loss of most of the opportunities outside the home. This trend has been supported by key consumers, women and young people, in particular Millennials, thus contributing to the affirmation of sales in the e-commerce channel”.
Wine Intelligence's comprehensive survey identifies 12 trends related to the Covid-19 era: growth in frequency of consumption, growth driven by the beating heart of wine drinkers (women, Generation X and regular consumers), growth in consumption away from meals, slow recovery of the average price per bottle in off-premise, e-commerce habits, interest in local production, more cautious consumption in terms of lifestyle, large-scale events dedicated to wine that have disappeared from the agenda, trips on break for a while, consumption that moves away from on-premise, more conservative and less emotional spending, return to growth in consumption, in volume, in the USA. “Many of these trends - explains Penco - have an impact on young people. Substantially the growing e-commerce, canceled events that won’t be on the agenda, the fact that there are no trips on the agenda, the change in social behavior: people drink less outside the home, obviously, and a lot at home. The frequency of consumption is growing: from bar to lunch, from formal to informal dinner, on the couch or in the restaurant. In 2020 the occasions of consumption remained stable or grew in 2020, essentially within the home, which compensated for the opportunities lost in habitual consumption outside the home. And this is true for practically all markets”.
It is also interesting to note that “consumers have turned to wine more than to other beverages - underlines the Italy Country Manager of Wine Intelligence - especially spirits. Beer, on the other hand, resumed in the summer after the decline of the beginning of the pandemic. The Millennials have increased, in an index between before and after the pandemic, more than average their opportunities for wine consumption. Between the end of 2019, the beginning of the pandemic in March, the April surveys and the end of August, there is a constant increase in the average frequency with which wine is drunk, from +3% in China to +19% in the USA. And this is also thanks to consumers between 18 and 24 years of age, Generation Z, and the Millennials, even if the contribution of Generation X remains fundamental. Between countries and frequency of consumption, we see that it is often the Milennials who grow the most, in a trend driven by women, the middle generation and those who already love wine. Women, I would like to reiterate, have increased wine consumption much more than average. The growth that there has been in recent months is mainly due to “core” consumers, the most frequent, already passionate. For them, wine has become an even more popular product in a time of difficulty and uncertainty”.
That of women, Penco resumes, “is a dynamic of constant growth in the frequency of consumption, which we have been seeing for a year and a half now, at a much faster pace than men. We must learn to turn to this trajectory, but abandoning stereotypes. Another trend concerns the growing frequency of consumption away from meals, between aperitifs, pubs and beach, New opportunities, which were the main motivation for growth at the beginning of the lockdown, come instead from the e-commerce boom: There is to understand to what extent, but it is certainly a way of selling more. As many more ways of consumption will remain in everyday life, especially among the youngest: the average number of occasions of consumption at home has increased for everyone, but especially among Millennials, in all countries, thanks to video calls, which bring us closer to friends even to drink a glass together”, concludes the Italy Country Manager of Wine Intelligence.

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